Instant Reaction: Newcastle 0-3 Arsenal

Same old Newcastle - Jamie McDonald

Alan Pardew was back on the touchline, but it didn't matter.

Did you expect it go any differently?

Oh sure, I gave that glimmer of hope in the preview when I wrote that if Newcastle could unlock Arsenal, there may be goals to be had. But even I quickly followed that up with a bit about Newcastle's inability to look interested in scoring. Especially on the road, Newcastle hadn't netted a goal since the 4-1 win over Hull on March 1.

Laurent Koscienly got on the end of a free kick in the 26th minute to give Arsenal a 1-0 lead and Mesut Ozil put in a rebound off a breakaway chance in the 42nd to pace the Gunners to a 3-0 win over Newcastle. Ozil's goal was controversial. The German was offsides, but given that Newcastle's defense did nothing to help out Tim Krul after he made two outstanding saves on Oliver Giroud's breakaway, to blame the referee for the score would not be fair. Giroud would get his goal in the second half, as he headed home a good cross in the 67th minute.

Newcastle's scoring woes were summed up early in the second half when a nice run by Yoan Gouffran saw him all alone on Wojciech Szczensy. However, Gouffran's shot was right at the keeper, who handled it clearly and Newcastle's scoreless streak on the road continued on.

There isn't much else to say about the performance. Newcastle gave up double digits in corner kicks, only put two shots on net (one a long range effort from Tiote) and looked passive in defense.

Cardiff City makes the trip to St. James' Park next week. The Bluebirds will likely view the encounter as a great chance to lift themselves out of the relegation zone. If Newcastle views it as anything other than an obstacle before holidays remains to be seen.

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